The Fetal Clinic follows a standard Down Syndrome screening Program.
The screening test is offered to all women: the preferred screening test is the First Trimester Screening test (or the combined screening test)
This can be done when the length of the baby is between 45 and 84 mm (we prefer the length to be around 50 or more, for other advantages). For mothers where this opportunity was lost, we offer the second trimester quadruple screening test [QST]. The QST is the next best screening test when FTS is not available or possible. In the QST, firstly we check if the baby’s head size (biparietal diameter) is between 32 and 52 mm, and if it so, we draw mother’s blood. The lab then calculates the level of four hormones produced by the baby and placenta: hCG, alpha feto protien (AFP), unconjugated estriol (UE3), and dimeric Inhibin A (DIA). Based on the combined levels of these hormones and on your age, the chance of the baby having Down Syndrome is calculated.
As in the FTS, when the chance is more than the average, we will counsel you the pros and cons of further testing.